Sticking to a healthy diet isn’t always easy. There are temptations everywhere that you go. Driving home from work, I pass at least a dozen fast food restaurants. This year I’ve committed to cooking at home for a healthier diet and lifestyle.

Avoiding these temptations is a lot easier when you’ve got something great waiting for you in your kitchen.

While many people put off home cooking due to time and cost, homemade meals are often more affordable and faster compared to takeout or fast food.

Cooking your own meals may be the solution you need to finally get in the best shape of your life.

Fresh food ingredients for a healthy diet

Home-Cooked Meals May Help You Get in Shape

Studies show that eating at home can help you follow a healthier diet. When you take the time to prepare meals, you use fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats while relying less on heavily processed ingredients.

The study was conducted by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Researchers found that people tend to consume fewer carbohydrates and sugar compared to those who regularly eat out.

They also found that home-cooked meals help people consume fewer total calories throughout the day. On the occasions when these people decide to eat out, they also consume fewer calories.

Will cooking at home make me healthier?

Cooking at Home to get Healthy and Save Time

You can cook at home without it eating up all your time. In fact, I’ve found that home cooking can be quicker compared to getting takeout or going to a restaurant.

If you’ve already got the ingredients in the kitchen, you may spend about 10 to 20 minutes in the kitchen preparing ingredients and making your meal. While the food is cooking, you can do other things such as washing the dishes and catching up on laundry.

Compare this to going to get fast food. You need to get in the car, drive to the restaurant, and wait in the drive-thru line. If you’re going around lunch or dinner, the lines may take forever. The entire trip can take much longer compared to the needed to prepare a meal in the kitchen.

Cooking at home is also often cheaper. A typical fast food meal may cost you about $10. For a family of four, you may spend $40 on greasy, processed food. I guarantee that most family meals with at least four servings will not cost you $40.

The bottom line is that cooking at home doesn’t need to be a chore. It can save you time and money while also helping you cut back on unhealthy sugars and fats.